Make sun paper

Having some fun with the sun!

a picture of the sun

We see it every day in the sky. Our sun is a burning ball of superheated gas. Even though it’s 93 million miles (149.6 million kilometers) away, we can feel its heat and light on Earth.

Make this marbled paper that looks just like our sun.


What you need:

a photo of all the necessary supplies for this activity: shaving cream, paper, cardboard, food coloring, wax paper, and toothpicks

  • Paper

  • Wax paper

  • Shaving cream

  • Cardboard or squeegee

  • Food coloring

  • Toothpicks


What to do:

  1. Cut off a square of wax paper and tape it down. You don’t want it moving around.

  2. Spread shaving cream over your wax paper and make sure it’s nice and smooth and foamy. Make it roughly circle shaped.

  3. a photo of wax paper taped to a table with a big glob of shaving cream

  4. Drop five drops of red and yellow food coloring in a circular area.

  5. a photo of shaving cream on wax paper and a hand dropping red and yellow food coloring onto it

  6. Use your toothpicks to swirl the red and yellow colors together in a circle.

  7. a toothpick is used to spread the food coloring around the food coloring has been spread evenly around in a roughly circular shape

  8. Place your paper right on top of the shaving cream and food coloring. Press it down lightly. Give it a few seconds to absorb the dye.

  9. a photo of a piece of paper laid on top of the shaving cream and food coloring

  10. Pull the paper off and set it down. It will look like a big glob of orange shaving cream at this point.

  11. the paper has been pulled off, and shaving cream covers it

  12. Gently scrape off the shaving cream with a squeegee or piece of cardboard with a nice flat edge.

  13. the cardboard squeegee is shown halfway through scraping the shaving creame off the paper

  14. Allow your paper to dry, and blot off any extra shaving cream with a paper towel. Be careful not to smear the food coloring before it dries, though!

  15. a closeup photo of the food coloring that has soaked into the paper

  16. Cut out your sun shape!

the cut out sun shape with swirls of food coloring mounted on a black piece of paper

Suggested uses for your sun paper:
  • Make it into a greeting card.
  • Dye an entire piece of paper and use it as wrapping paper.
  • Glue it to black construction paper and frame it.


Download a PDF of this activity.

page published on August 24, 2015
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